Advice for students wanting to become a Paramedic

Over time, various folk have contacted me asking for advice on starting their career as a Paramedic.  I always find this odd.  I would have thought by my mad ramblings laid down in previous blogs, it was obvious that I’m a bumbling, kak-handed, accident prone disaster movie just waiting to happen.  Why on earth folk would expect me to be able to dish out sound advice is beyond comprehension.

However, advice people have asked for and advice has been given.  I’m never too sure it was the sort of advice folk wanted but I gave it a go.  Anyway, someone recently suggested it a good idea to write a blog on it – so I have.  But only a short one.  With not much advice.  More a statement.  Or a warning.  You decide . . .

Your "insert relevant country/county of orgin here" Ambulance Service needs youLast year I wrote back to someone who was asking whether or not it would be an insane idea to become a paramedic.  I think wholly, yes.  Yes it would.  Here’s my reply I wrote back then . . . upon reading it I thought it somewhat summed up mostly, what it is to become a medic.

Joining the Ambulance Service was a good move I think.  I still thoroughly enjoy my job so I must be partly insane.  However, there are many who don’t, or are so stagnated that it appears they don’t . . . these are the folk to potentially veer away from if you ever join.  They can bring you down and then the job will make you angry, depressed, resentful and utterly cynical of life.  Keep on the positive side and the opposite should be true.

Tips and hints . . . this depends on how old you are.  If you’re young, ie just out of school then University is the expected route.  If you’re older then the same is true but it just becomes a little harder to juggle round real life.  However, the London Ambulance Service does have other routes available to it and it’s best to look online at their website for ideas . . . I’ll be more than happy to help with questions when and if they arrive.

The main uni’s for LAS are Hertfordshire, Greenwhich and St Georges (2 year course).  It’s full on, expensive, hard work and your soul will be battered.  You will see and wear vomit, piss, shit and blood.  You will be punched, scratched, spat at and pushed.  You will be lied to, sworn at, insulted and degraded.  You will be blamed, accused and made to feel a cheat.  You will make mistakes, hurt people, damage permanently and probably be part responsible for some deaths.

But you know what, you might even help someone, you might even make them smile, take away their pain, gain their trust and give someone hope.  And you never know, you might just even save a life once in a while . . . or even deliver one!

All this for ridiculously long hours, stupidly low pay (none whilst studying) and no social life.

If you think you like the sound of that . . . then becoming a paramedic is defo for you.  On the plus side there is lots you can do with it . . . Emergency Care Practitioner (ECP), Critical Care Paramedic, Advanced Paramedic, HEMS, HART, Emergency Preparedeness and Resilience (What I’m in), BETS . . . this list is becoming endless as the “paramedic” title starts to become more and more recognised. 

Oh, and join the College of Paramedics . . . it’s fast becoming like a union for us. Hope that is someway to start helping.  And please feel free to ask any questions.

Take care, good luck.  Love, light and peace

Binder Smiff
Obviously there are some things there that are to be interpreted with a subtle amount of satire.  However, the foundation is pretty much there.  And of course, I, like many others, will be more than happy to help with further queries should anyone need them.
Binder
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